Accordion Revolution: A People's History of the Accordion in North America from the Industrial Revolution to Rock and Roll (Paperback)
Before the dawn of rock 'n' roll, the accordion ranked among North America's most popular instruments. Nearly every ethnicity on the continent played the squeezebox- Irish, Scottish, French, German, Eastern European, Jewish, and Latino. The instrument packed barn dances, jazz clubs, and recital halls. It was heard in cantinas on the Mexican frontier, Creole string bands in New Orleans, and Inuit square dances above the Arctic Circle. Portable, cheap, and loud, accordions became the soundtrack for modernity as the growing music industry exploited them on records, radio, film, and television.
Millions of people played accordions until a disastrous combination of economics, demographics, and electronic instruments nearly erased them from mainstream culture. Emerging from exile for a new generation, this book invites beginners or seasoned accordionists, and music fans in general to rediscover a forgotten legion of little-known artists. With an eye for colorful characters and a sharp sense of humor, accordion historian Bruce Triggs uncovers the hidden backstory of the squeezebox in everyone's closet. Accordion Revolution is about more than an instrument: it's a living, breathing restoration of the squeezebox to its rightful place at the roots of North America's popular music.